NEW DELHI, July 19: The mortal remains of Mr Giri Lal Jain, a veteran journalist, were consigned to flames at Nigambodh Ghat here this evening. He died here early this morning. He was the former Editor-in-Chief of The Times of India.
Mr Jain, 71, had been in coma since July 2 after an operation on the previous day for liver cirrhosis. He had developed severe bleeding and his overall condition deteriorated last evening. He passed away at 3.30 a.m. in the Intensive Care Unit of the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences.
He is survived by his wife, three daughters and a son.
In a condolence message, Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao expressed grief at the death of Mr Jain. He said that Mr Jain was a distinguished journalist whose death would be mourned by the large journalistic fraternity. He was a prolific writer.
Mr Rao said that editorials and lead articles of Mr Jain were appreciated equally by his admirers and critics. He recalled that Mr Jain was awarded Padma Bhushan in recognition for his meritorious service. He said Mr Jain maintained high professional standards throughout his long and illustrious career.
Information and Broadcasting Minister KP Singh Deo also described Mr Jain as a journalist who always gave a new insight and set new standards for the younger generation of professionals. In a condolence message, Mr Singh Deo said, “Mr Jain’s editorials and articles fell into a class of their own, always giving new insight”. He said that the death of the veteran scribe left a deep void in Indian journalism. The consultative committee of MPs attached to the I&B Ministry also condoled the death of Mr Jain in a resolution.
Mr GP Birla, a noted industrialist, while expressing his deep shock at the death of Mr Jain, described him as one of the great editors of our times. “Giri Lal showed in his writings a deep understanding of the political, social and religious trends in the country and always sought to enhance the readers’ comprehension of developments at home and abroad. A man of great integrity, he wrote without fear and favour,” said Mr GP Birla.
Mr CK Birla, a well-known industrialist, also paid rich tributes to Mr Jain and recalled Mr Jain’s depth of knowledge, breadth of vision and felicity of expression which gave a unique character and quality to whatever Mr Jain wrote.
Mr KR Singh, a well-known communicator and Chairman of the Indian Foundation for PR Education and Research, said with Mr Jain’s death Indian journalism lost a great editor, the country a great intellectual and the fraternity of communicators one of its greatest ‘gurus’.
The All-India Newspapers Editors Conference (AINEC) also expressed deep shock at the sudden death of Mr Jain. In a condolence message, Mr Vishwa Bandhu Gupta, AINEC president said that Mr Jain was free and fair writer who served Indian journalism for number of decades.
Dr Ved Pratap Vaidic, editor PTI Bhasha, described Mr Jain as one of the greatest Indian journalists of the century. Mr Vaidic said, “Mr Jain had a marked influence on the political thinking of the post-independence India.”
The Bharatiya Janata Party mourned the death of Mr Jain. All the top leaders were present at a condolence meeting at the party office.
Presiding over the meeting, BJP president LK Advani said in the death of Mr Jain, the country has lost an outstanding journalist, a great thinker and an ardent nationalist. Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee extolled Mr Jain’s erudition, professional integrity and sheer dedication that helped him to rise from the ranks to the top.
The Hindustan Times, 20 July 1993